Human Resources Student Support Services System Planning and Operations Technology School Nutrition Central Enrollment Finance Title
School Directory Big A Elementary Liberty Elementary Toccoa Elementary Stephens County Middle School Stephens County High School Stephens County Fifth Grade Academy
District Directory Directions Superintendent's Corner Meetings And Strategic Planning Board of Education Charter System SPLOST Accreditation
Community Apps for Education Inclement Weather High School Diploma Petition Open Records Request Student Accident Insurance
Participant Forms
Past Press Releases Young Georgia Authors SKILLS USA Winners Campfire Toccoa

2009-2010 Press Releases



FFA - New Officers

Congratulations to Beth Hickey, who was selected as the Vice-President for the Georgia Association of FFA.

The State FFA Officers will represent the Georgia Association as delegates to the National FFA Convention in Indianapolis this October

Read Full Press Release


Congratulations to Mr. Farish Mulkey agriculture education teacher at Stephens County High School for his dedication and time spent with FFA members Beth Hickey and Miranda Coldwell. They represented their school and community well yesterday winning both Junior and Senior Public Speaking career development events. Beth and Miranda will advance to state competition which will take place at the annual FFA convention in Macon.


State Superintendent of Schools

Georgia law requires the legislature to approve a balanced budget, which I
believe is very wise. In these difficult economic times, I do not envy the
task they have before them. But, just as we should not saddle the next
generation with our debt, we also should not take away the opportunity for
our kids to receive an education that prepares them for their 21st century

We are fortunate to have some of the best teachers and school leaders in
the nation (Georgia has had a National Principal of the Year for three
years in a row). They have been laser-focused on their mission of
improving student achievement, and I am proud to see so much progress
being made. But, I maintain that drastic and severe cuts hurt teachers and students
and negatively impact our progress. If there are further cuts to school
system funding then we can't expect things to be business as usual. While
I fully recognize the severity of our revenue shortfall, I am not in favor
of additional cuts to public K-12 education.

Recently, the House and Senate asked that we discuss budget options if
revenues were less than the Governor?s original FY11 budget submission.
When looking at such a bleak scenario, we told members of the General
Assembly that it is unrealistic to think that you can truly retain 180
days of quality instruction for students if all ten days of pre- and
post-planning for teachers are cut.

Expecting teachers to begin and end a school year on the same day students
do is like a restaurant manager asking staff members to show up at the
same time the first customer is to be served. That manager knows that if
dinner service starts at 5:00 you better be willing to pay your chef to
come in for preparation a few hours earlier. And when have you ever seen
the staff leave the restaurant at the same time as the last customer? That
restaurant would not be successful. Similarly, teachers need preparation
time to be successful.

Do I want to cut the number of instructional days for students?  Of course
not. But as a former classroom teacher, I know that we must provide
teachers time to prepare so they can give our students their very best.
Our kids deserve it! I appreciate the diligence of the legislators and the seriousness of their
exploration of all the issues and all the options. I am hopeful that the
legislature will prioritize this budget to fund one of our primary
constitutional obligations, educating Georgia's K-12 students.
Providing for our students now is an investment in our state's current and
future success.  If we want to continue making progress, then we must be
willing to invest in Georgia's greatest resource, our children.

Kathy Cox, a parent and a veteran classroom teacher, is Georgia's
Superintendent of Schools.


TOCCOA, GA – The Georgia Department of Education (GaDOE) is honoring four Stephens County  schools for reaching  high levels of student participation in the School Nutrition Program.  During the 2007-2008 school year 75 percent of students in attendance in Georgia Schools ate lunch each day and 34 percent ate breakfast.  This participation is among the highest in the nation. 


Schools that earned this distinction generally share two common characteristics: (1) administrators, faculty, and staff who support and participate in the program and who see the program as enhancing the learning process and (2) many of these schools offer a wide variety of menu choices daily, allowing a greater opportunity to select a nutritionally complete meal that they enjoy.


Big A Elementary School achieved a 91% participation rate.  A certificate from GaDOE that acknowledges this successful effort has been awarded to Big A Elementary School.


Eastanollee Elementary School achieved  a 93% participation rate.  A certificate from GaDOE that acknowledges this successful effort has been awarded to Eastanollee Elementary School.


Liberty Elementary School achieved  a 92% participation rate.  A certificate from GaDOE that acknowledges this successful effort has been awarded to Liberty Elementary School.


Toccoa Elementary School achieved  a 94% participation rate.  A certificate from GaDOE that acknowledges this successful effort has been awarded to Toccoa Elementary School.



“This recognition from the School Nutrition Program of the Georgia Department of Education to the members of our nutrition staff and faculty is wonderful way to acknowledge their hard work and dedication,” said Superintendent Whiten.  “If anything, this recognition will make all of us work harder to reach even more students by serving them nutritious meals and teaching them about good nutrition by providing them healthy meals.  Nutrition education is the key to developing healthy eating habits for a lifetime.”


ATLANTA- WNEG Radio was one of two radio stations in Georgia to be awarded the “Beacon Award” by the Georgia School Boards Association.


This award has been expanded to separately recognize print and electronic media representatives/organizations whose coverage over time has created understanding of public education issues by informing the general public about programs, policies and/or issues affecting the public schools, students, and/or communities.


The award was given at the Georgia School Boards Association’s annual conference held in Atlanta on December 4, 2009. WNEG was recognized in the electronic media category.


ATLANTA – The Stephens County Board of Education was one of six school boards in the state to be named a Georgia School Boards Association “School Board of Distinction.” The award was given at the association’s annual conference held in Atlanta on December 4-5, 2009. The Board of Distinction designation is given to boards that achieve the following:


  • Are in compliance with GSBA Standards for Local Boards of Education

  • Have implemented the GSBA Board/Leadership Team Self Assessment Checklist

  • Have formalized the superintendent evaluation incorporating district goals

  • Have a web link to the local district’s policy manual that is posted to the Internet

  • Have a copy of, or a web link to, the board’s goal-setting model and a listing of the district’s goals

  • Have a web link to postings of monthly board meeting agendas

  • Have a stated plan to integrate technology at the governance level of the local district


Participation in the GSBA Standards for Local Boards of Education and the Board of Distinction program is voluntary. The Standards program sets benchmarks of organizational structure and governance objectives for local boards of education that wish to participate in the program. Details on the Standards and the Board of Distinction are available on GSBA’s website: www.gsba.com.


GSBA is a voluntary association of Georgia’s 180 local boards of education. It provides programs training and services to assist boards in governing local school systems.


ATLANTA – Governor Sonny Perdue and State Superintendent of Schools Kathy Cox honored four Georgia high schools today with the Governor’s Cup trophy for improvement in SAT scores. Governor Perdue initiated the statewide competition in 2003 as part of an overall effort to raise Georgia’s SAT scores.

“Our students have stepped up to the challenge and worked hard to raise SAT scores,” said Governor Perdue. “These schools now have bragging rights for the next year. This is a tough competition to win, and I am proud of the tremendous improvement these schools have achieved in SAT scores.”

The Governor’s Cup is awarded annually to the school in each class with the highest average SAT score improvement over the past three years. Four of the winners were recognized today, including two that tied for the Class AAAAA crown. The remaining two winners will be announced next week.

Governor Perdue presented the winning schools with a Governor’s Cup trophy and a $2,000 grant towards SAT preparation materials. The entire student body and faculty members also received t-shirts as part of the recognition. The Governor’s Cup challenge is based on high school athletic regions and classifications assigned by the Georgia High School Association. ATT is a partner in the Governor’s Cup, providing all prizes to winning schools.

The winning schools are:

Hawkinsville High School                Pulaski County A
Oglethorpe County High School      Oglethorpe County AA
Northside High School                   Houston County AAAAA
Savannah Arts Academy               Chatham County AAAAA
(The AAA and AAAA statewide winners will be announced next week.)

“The 2009 winners of the Governor's Cup have made a commitment to high standards, high expectations and hard work, and they are getting the results,” said State Superintendent of Schools Kathy Cox. “Congratulations to the educators, students and community members at these award-winning schools.”

A regional champion trophy and a $1,000 grant were also awarded to high schools with the largest numerical improvement in SAT scores among schools in their GHSA region. A list of the region champions is included at the end of this release.

The Governor’s Cup Challenge is a part of Governor Perdue’s efforts to improve students’ performance on the SAT and their potential for success in post-secondary education. Along with the Governor’s Cup challenge, Governor Perdue also launched gacollege411.org, an online resource providing post-secondary education planning materials to students statewide.

Governor Perdue and Superintendent Cox have also made free online SAT prep classes available to all high schools. Governor Perdue has placed graduation coaches in middle and high schools to identify students who otherwise might not graduate and help them get back on the path towards a diploma.

Region champions announced today are below:

Class A: Seminole County Middle/High School, 1A; Hawkinsville High School, 2A (also state champs); Jenkins County High School, 3A; Twiggs County High School, 4A; Bowdon High School, 6A; Dekalb School Of The Arts, 7A; and Commerce High School, 8A.

Class AA: Cook County High School, 1AA; Charlton County High School, 2AA; Swainsboro High School, 3AA; Greene County High School, 4AA; Lamar County Comprehensive High School, 5AA; Decatur High School, 6AA; Armuchee High School, 7AA; and Oglethorpe County High School, 8AA (also state champs).

Class AAA: Worth County High School, 1 AAA; Troup County High School, 2AAA; Richmond Hill High School, 3AAA; Eagle's Landing High School, 4AAA; Druid Hills High School, Riverwood High School, (tied for region championship) 5AAA; Cedartown High School, 6AAA; Lumpkin County High School, 7AAA; and Stephens County High School, 8AAA.

Class AAAA: Bainbridge High School, 1AAAA; Wayne County High School, 2AAAA; Johnson Magnet, 3AAAA; Forest Park High School, 4AAAA; Tri-Cities High School, 5AAAA; Lakeside-Dekalb High School, 6AAAA;Cass High School, 7AAAA; and Loganville High School, 8AAAA..

Class AAAAA: Northside High School. 1AAAAA (also tied for state championship); Redan High School, 2AAAAA; Savannah Arts Academy, 3AAAAA (also tied for state championship); East Coweta High School, 4AAAAA; Cherokee High School, 5AAAAA; Alpharetta High School, Wheeler High School, (tied for region championship) 6AAAAA; South Forsyth High School, 7AAAAA; and Central Gwinnett High School, 8AAAAA.

For more information on the Governor’s Cup, please visit www.satrocks.com